Sunday, October 18, 2009

Tasting Notes: Italian Wines at JavaMonkey and Majestic Fine Wines at Sherlock's

Yes, it's a plethora of tasting notes this week!

My New Year's Resolution was to drink more European wines, but after going to California in February and the Pacific Northwest in June, I haven't been good at keeping it. Like with other resolutions, temptation got in the way of follow-through. So thanks, Jess, for helping me keep it with the Italian wine tasting at JavaMonkey!

The wines (all Italian, so will just give regions):

2008 Ricossa Gavi (Piemonte): 100% Cortese
This is a good Italian white for those who complain that Pinot Grigio just doesn't have much to it. Mineral melon-citrus nose with a lot of lemon following through to the finish. Pesce, per favore!
Rating: Very Good

Lunetta Prosecco (Trentino):
Smells like beer, seriously! Yeah, it's a Prosecco, basically bubbles in a bottle, but trying it with an orange slice -- Italian Mimosa? -- brought out some interesting steely notes.
Rating: Good

2006 Rocca delle Macìe Chianti Classico (Toscana): 95% Sangiovese, 5% Merlot
Berry nose, and acidic with a little bitterness around the edges and a funky finish. Didn't stand up to food at all.
Rating: Meh

2006 Ricossa Barbera d'Asti (Piemonte):
Plum-berry-currant nose with that fruit and a little bit of oak on the palate.
Rating: Very Good

2006 Rocca delle Macìe Sasyr (Toscana): 60% Sangiovese, 40% Syrah
Butter and blueberry on the nose, well-balanced with more berry and a little anise on the finish.
Random quote from another taster: "Smells like dinner, not like wine!"
Rating: Very Good

2008 Ricossa Moscato d'Asti (Piemonte):
Peaches and honeysuckle, sweet but not quite syrupy.
Rating: Good

The Barbera was my favorite with the Sasyr close behind.

Every so often, I get an email from Sherlock's about an "Extraordinary wine tasting event!" I guess that's opposed to their ordinary wine tastings on Saturday. This past Friday's hyperbolic tasting was of wines from Majestic Fine Wines, who do not have a public web site. They distribute Murphy-Goode wines and had some at the tasting. For those who are wondering why that sounds familiar, Atlanta's own Hardy Wallace is now their "Wine Country Lifestyle Correspondent." He has the job that the rest of us oenophiles really want, getting paid to drink wine and write about it. His personal blog is Dirty South Wine. Now if only I could land a gig like that...

Yes, there were a lot of wines. Yes, I tasted all of them. Yes, I was there for a while and had lots of bread in between. Yes, they were all free for everyone, so I didn't get any wine-blogger privileges (bite me, FTC). Here are the wines:

2008 Murphy-Goode Fume Blanc (Sonoma):
Tropical grapefruit nose, but the finish fades into the tropical sunset a bit too quickly.
Rating: Good(e?)

2008 Longboat Sauvignon Blanc (New Zealand):
Herb and green apple nose with a little toast on the palate. Yep, a typical grassy New Zealand Sauv Blanc.
Rating: Good-Very Good

2007 Matanzas Creek Sauvignon Blanc (Sonoma):
Pink grapefruit and melon, very light.
Rating: Good

2007 Cambria Chardonnay (Santa Barbara):
Smoky oaky vanilla melon. Yeah, it's an oaky chardonnay. Not to my taste.
Rating: Okay

2006 Stonestreet Chardonnay (Sonoma):
Fruit and mineral with only a little oak.
Rating: Good

2007 Paco & Lola Albarino (Rias Baixas region of Spain):
Basil and floral nose, nicely balanced floral and citrus on the palate.
Rating: Very Good to Excellent

2007 Murphy-Goode Chardonnay:
Although this wine was billed as "apple pie in a glass," I found more pear and vanilla with a watery texture.
Rating: Meh

2006 Murphy-Goode Merlot:
This part of the given description cracked me up: "It's sourced from bench and hillside vineyards, where the grapes struggle in character-building conditions."
The character is blackberry with moderate tannins and smooth texture.
Rating: Good

2005 Matanzas Creek Merlot:
Boysenberries, cherries, and clove on the nose; blackberry, pepper, and earthy notes on the palate.
Rating: Very Good

2007 Murphy-Goode Cabernet Sauvignon:
Blackberry and thyme nose. More fruit with vanilla and oak, this one opened nicely.
Rating: Good to Very Good

2007 Edmeades Mendocino Zinfandel (Mendocino, CA):
The nose is bright fruit with dill, and it follows through with stone fruit and a little caramel.
Rating: Very Good

2006 Murphy-Goode "Liar's Dice" Zinfandel: 96% Zinfandel, 4% Carignan
Raspberry, currant, and black cherry nose. Nice follow-through as a jammy Zin (love it!) with blackberry, but balanced enough to still be a dry wine.
Rating: Very Good

2006 Yangarra "Cadenzia" (McLaren Vale, Aus):
Chocolate-covered cherries -- so smooth!
Rating: Excellent

We came home with bottles of the Paco & Lola Albarino, Murphy-Goode "Liar's Dice" Zinfandel, and Yangarra "Cadenzia." Guess it was worthy of the hyperbole after all.

1 comment:

pacolola said...

Dear Cecilia
thanks for your nice words regarding Paco & Lola, we hope that the 08 vintage can reach the excellent
please feel free to visit our website and blog


David Martinez
Paco & Lola General Manager